To start, most passenger cars are exported from the Netherlands, with approximately 260,000 exported vehicles versus roughly 217,000 individual imports in 2018. Zooming into the fuel type for passenger cars that got imported in the same year, the majority had a petrol engine, whereas the diesel saw a first-time decrease in imports between 2012 and 2018. The growth in electric vehicle (EV) imports increased from nearly 120 EVs in 2012 to approximately 1,200 in 2018.
Observing passenger car sales, they fluctuated heavily between 2010 and 2019, with 2011 counting as the year with the highest sales volume. In 2019, just over 446,000 cars were sold. German car manufacturer Volkswagen was the most sold brand in the Netherlands in 2019, whereas Renault and Opel were ranked second and third, respectively. Looking at the sales figures by car model, they do not differ much from the sales volumes per brand. Volkswagen sold nearly 15,000 Polo models in 2019 and was ranked first, whereas the most sold Renault model was the Clio. Kia closed the top three with their Picanto, with nearly 11,000 cars sold.
However, the automotive industry changed rapidly since the first brands introduced their plug-in hybrid and electric passenger cars. When having a closer look at the electric vehicle infrastructure in the Netherlands, the country had the highest electric vehicle charger density. There were nearly 20 EV charging stations in 2018 per 100 kilometers. Furthermore, considering the explosive growth in electric vehicles, the high density is needed to provide enough charging points for EV car owners. In 2013, there were approximately 4,200 fully electric vehicles, whereas by 2019 the number increased significantly to roughly 107,500 in total. This was partially the reason for the Tesla Model 3, which due to its additional leasing tax advantage had a stark sales increase in 2019. Therefore, it is expected that with the arrival of lower-priced electric vehicles more investments will be needed to keep the electric vehicle infrastructure on a high level.